Narcissistic Traits

Typically, you will see groupings of the following traits in the n. Does the person you’re thinking of show several of these traits, or rather, a pattern of these traits?

{Unpredictable way of relating} warm, but then goes cold; pouts for attention; cuts others off emotionally; won’t talk or look at them, but will be sweet to the person standing at their side

{Withholding} affection, attention, acknowledgement

{Lacks empathy} teases, taunts, and berates another; gets irate and calls you sensitive when you tell them how it affects you

{Critical} judges others openly, taunts, compares and ridicules and is relentless about it, but then can turn around as say, “Just kidding!” and “Boy, are you sensitive!”

{Envious} cannot tolerate another person having what they feel they are lacking; could be anything from self-acceptance to friends to money to good looks to attention—and more

{Entitlement issues} feels deserving of good that others have; is never genuinely happy for another

{Shallow} lacks depth, as well as the ability to understand the complexity of what others say

{Sadistic} yes, they do inflict pain, often the emotional kind, and will find it very difficult to apologize (nor will they understand why they should)

{Rigid} there is no room for negotiation or compromise, as the n will feel like they are losing (which means, to an n, that they, themselves, are slipping away…), and this can feel, to the n, akin to death. They will not see it as such, but if we can, we can better understand how fragile the n is.

Not every person who has pronounced traits as named above will be diagnosed with NPD; only a trained psychotherapist or psychiatrist can make a definitive diagnosis. However, these traits—in varying degrees, with various embellishments, and in different ways depending on the person—provide excellent clues that alert to the possibility that someone may be more narcissistic than not, and coupled with our reaction to them, can help us be more aware in order to take care of ourselves.

From Narcissism: Surviving the Self-Involved